UK announces support for planned underwater engineering hub

WCN Editorial Team 6 May 2019 EUROPE ENERGY & UTILITIES

The UK government has announced its support to industry plans for a new underwater engineering hub in Aberdeen.
The proposed Global Underwater Engineering Hub is intended to help diversify the UK’s oil and gas sector as well as support the country's shift from fossil fuels towards renewables.

The new subsea hub is expected to bring together underwater technologies from both industry and academia to build on UK expertise in subsea robotics, remotely-operated underwater vehicles and maritime support vessels.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May said: "Cementing Aberdeen’s place as an energy hub for offshore and renewables, the new hub would bring together areas of excellence in underwater technology under a single commercial vision. It would support industry, generate new skilled jobs and help us in the fight against climate change.”

The government is now encouraging industry to develop a business case for the proposed research hub. The case will be reviewed by the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

UK government Business Minister Andrew Stephenson said: "As the UK continues to transition towards a low-carbon economy, the Global Underwater Engineering Hub can help the region rise to the challenge of this transition, helping to anchor the UK’s expert engineering supply chain here in the north east of Scotland."

The UK, which is claimed to have 40% share of the global market in underwater engineering, seeks to exploit the industry which is estimated to be worth more than £100bn globally by 2035, the government said.

Additionally, the hub is expected to help make Scotland a go-to destination for subsea engineering while creating jobs and business opportunities.

Industry body Subsea UK chief executive Neil Gordon said: "While Aberdeen is home to the majority of underwater engineering and technology companies, there are significant clusters across the UK, including Scotland’s central belt, the North-East England and South of England, supporting a range of sectors from marine renewables to oil and gas to defence."

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Image: UK backs plan for new underwater engineering base. Photo: courtesy of QR9iudjz0/Freeimages.com.

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